Thread Number: 41684  /  Tag: Recent Vacuum Cleaners from past 20 years
Need Help Installing Oreck "Endurolife" Serpentine Belt
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Post# 441036   4/19/2021 at 17:19 by UberGreenGuru (Chicago, Illinois )        

Okay! So a few months ago, I bought a used Oreck U2000RB-1 to use for parts - in particular, I wanted the motor w/ the grooved drive shaft & the brush roll w/ grooved drive pulley designed to be used with the "Endurolife" Serpentine Belt.

My original plan was to convert my existing Oreck U4120H2B (my daily driver) to accept the "Endurolife" Serpentine Belt by swapping in the U2000RB-1 Motor & Brush Roll.

Unfortunately, the U2000RB-1 motor was in pretty rough shape, so instead of doing a direct motor swap I opted to replace the two 608 ball bearings on the armature -- then, I swapped the U2000RB-1 armature into my existing U4120H2B Motor, as the two motors were identical "Johnson" units - the only difference was the style of output shaft.

So far so good with everything up until this point. - But now I'm currently trying to install the "Endurolife" Serpentine Belt... and it's proving to be rather difficult, as the "Endurolife" Belt doesn't stretch much at all.

I've tried installing the brush roll & then attempting to stretch the belt from the motor shaft to the brush roll pulley; and vice-versa.

I've also hooked the belt onto the brush roll & motor shaft, and attempted to use the brush roll as leverage while I tried to insert the brush roll into the respective slots in the housing - to no avail.

I simply can't get this damn "Endurolife" belt to stretch enough to install it!

Dear VacuumLand Members: Does anyone have any tips, tricks, suggestions, or ideas as to how I can properly install this darn "Endurolife" belt onto my Oreck XL Vacuum?

Any help would be *sincerely* appreciated!

Thank You Very Much!

~Justin in Chicago

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Post# 441040 , Reply# 1   4/19/2021 at 22:37 by cam2s (Nebraska)        

I would take the motor out, hook the belt around the pulley and then set the whole unit in place. Those kinds of belts donít have much give so itís takes some maneuvering to get it in place.

Post# 441053 , Reply# 2   4/20/2021 at 13:38 by Ubergreenguru (Chicago, Illinois )        

Thank You, Cam2s! -- I was hoping I could avoid pulling the motor out again after I got the wires neatly tucked away, but I'm definitely going to have to give this a try... because you're absolutely right - these darn Endurolife belts don't have much give in them *at all*!

I guess I should've given more thought to the pros & cons of Endurolife belts before I made the decision to convert my Oreck XL U4120H2B to use the Endurolife Serpentine Belt instead of the standard flat belt. - It seemed like it would be an "Upgrade" of sorts, being that it's newer technology and all... but so far it has proved to be a gigantic pain-in-the-butt! -- Now I understand why Oreck refers to the Endurolife belt as a "Permanent Belt", LOL!

Post# 441057 , Reply# 3   4/20/2021 at 16:09 by UberGreenGuru (Chicago, Illinois )        
I'm Dumb!

Well, Damn! -- I honestly don't know why I was so hesitant to take the motor out in order to get the belt on... Heck! It only requires the removal of 3 screws!

I put the brush roll in; then removed the 3 screws on the fan duct + motor; lifted the motor up; slipped the Endurolife belt around the brush roll pulley & around the motor shaft; and was able to line the motor up with the screw holes & tighten down the screws without the slightest bit of trouble. -- The "Endurolife" Belt has been successfully installed!

Gosh darnit, after experiencing how RIDICULOUSLY EASY IT WAS to slip the Endurolife Belt onto the motor shaft by simply lifting the motor up a little bit, I feel like a complete idiot for wrestling with that belt & trying to stretch it around both pulleys for an entire hour yesterday! - And in my frustration, I never even thought about pulling the motor to see if it would make it easier to get the belt on!...


Cam2s, Thank You *SO MUCH* for pointing out the obvious solution to my problem! - Your suggestion worked like a CHARM & I sincerely appreciate the help!

Problem Solved! ✅😁👍🏻

I honestly don't know what I would do without VacuumLand.Org - For anyone reading this: THANK YOU FOR SHARING YOUR VACUUM KNOWLEDGE & MAKING VACUUMLAND.ORG AWESOME! 🙏🏻👏🏻

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Post# 441073 , Reply# 4   4/21/2021 at 09:17 by vacman117 (Valparaiso, IN)        

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Was the motor an exact fit to the molding of model you were swapping it into? I've been wanting to upgrade a classic style Oreck with the newer motor, brushroll, and belt but didn't know if the motor would fit!

Post# 441076 , Reply# 5   4/21/2021 at 10:24 by gottahaveahoove (Pittston, Pennsylvania, 18640)        
This site is a great place

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for all of us to learn and share. Countless people have had their problems solved.

Post# 441079 , Reply# 6   4/21/2021 at 10:35 by cam2s (Nebraska)        
Serpentine belts

This probably wouldnít have worked with your Oreck since it would have the fan on the other side of the motor, but if you have a geared or serpentine belt in something like a canister power nozzle, sometimes you donít even have to take the entire motor out. If you loosen the screws enough to pivot the motor to let the belt slip on then just straighten it and tighten down the screws.

Post# 441122 , Reply# 7   4/22/2021 at 13:57 by Ubergreenguru (Chicago, Illinois )        

I had an Oreck U4120H2B Manufactured in 2007, which had the "Johnson" brand motor in it w/ the standard flat belt drive shaft.


I purchased a used & beat-up Oreck U2000RB-1 off of eBay, which also had a "Johnson" brand motor in it - but this one had the Grooved drive shaft for use w/ the ribbed Endurolife serpentine belts.


I had originally planned to do a direct motor swap from the U2000 into my U4120, but the U2000 motor looked like it had been to hell and back - like the previous owner had likely vacuumed up water at some point.  -  The motor still worked, but the bearings were completely shot.


So, instead of doing a direct motor swap, I decided that since both motors were IDENTICAL with the exception of the drive shaft - that I would keep the field assy. from my U4120, then transplant the U2000 armature assy. w/ grooved drive pulley into my existing motor, after of course, replacing the armature bearings with two brand-new SKF 608-2RSJEM C3 bearings.


After performing "transplant surgery" on my U4120H2B motor & reassembling it with an armature core from the U2000RB-1 donor motor -- everything went back together without issue... except for my struggle trying to figure out how to get the Endurolife belt on... but once I got the Endurolife belt on (thanks to VacuumLand), my "frankensteined" Endurolife Belt Oreck U4120H2B roared happily to life & is quite honestly running better than it ever has before during my ownership of the vacuum!



Vacman117, unfortunately I don't have any of the older "Classic" style Orecks in my collection, so I can't ascertain whether or not a newer Oreck motor would be a direct fit for your older-style Oreck Housing. - You would have to ask another VacuumLand member who has more experience than I do with the older Oreck machines.



Best of Luck to You!

~Justin in Chicago

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